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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY
Barid Bel Medar

Ask Simple questions, get simple answers (aMoL version covering the entire series)

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I guess it might be fitting that Demandred was essentially taken down finally by one of the only people who did work hard for all of his abilities in this series. Lan.

 

I believe it was a good choice. Lan who was literally born to fight the Shadow, his whole existence has been dedicated to destroying it. 

 

What makes it more impressive was the fact he sacrificed his life to win as well. (Not sure exactly what happened with him all being fine, but the point being, he did it expecting to die)

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Yeah i agree Mat didnt do much to gain his skill in battle, walking through a magic door way and coming out a general without peer is a bit, meh. But he was hung and was only saved by Rand at the last minute, he was inches from death. Also it shouldnt come as a surprise he did so well, if anyone was built up in the series as a great general its mat. Even straight after Rhuidean, hes looking at hills and thinking of how they can be defended, then after beating Caulduin to breaking out of Altara with the whole of the seanchan army on his tail he is being built as the lights general. Indeed one of his titles is "son of battles". And it didnt all run smoothly for him at the last battle a lot of people are doubting him through it and even Tuon begins to lose faith, its only at the end Mat plays the hand he had been waiting for, as he said to Elayne in his poker metaphor, before that it was looking grim.

So i think its abit unfair to suggest that Demanded was beaten easily by mat or that it was some great upset. Demanded had held all the aces until his death and mat used all his skill honded throughout the series just holding him of until the right moment.

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Yeah i agree Mat didnt do much to gain his skill in battle, walking through a magic door way and coming out a general without peer is a bit, meh. But he was hung and was only saved by Rand at the last minute, he was inches from death. Also it shouldnt come as a surprise he did so well, if anyone was built up in the series as a great general its mat. Even straight after Rhuidean, hes looking at hills and thinking of how they can be defended, then after beating Caulduin to breaking out of Altara with the whole of the seanchan army on his tail he is being built as the lights general. Indeed one of his titles is "son of battles". And it didnt all run smoothly for him at the last battle a lot of people are doubting him through it and even Tuon begins to lose faith, its only at the end Mat plays the hand he had been waiting for, as he said to Elayne in his poker metaphor, before that it was looking grim.

So i think its abit unfair to suggest that Demanded was beaten easily by mat or that it was some great upset. Demanded had held all the aces until his death and mat used all his skill honded throughout the series just holding him of until the right moment.

I find it hard to buy Pattern induced stuff as true "danger". So Mat being hung meant nothing to me. The Pattern knew that Rand would save him else it would've just ended up killing it's own general.

 

That's been a problem of the series forever. The Pattern made everything happen. Because everything was part of some prophecy. Even some of the Dark One's actions facilitated parts of the prophecy, and I thought he was meant to be exempt from the pattern, so how come the taint effected Rand in that one specific way that gave him the knowledge he needed to defeat the Dark One. It could've made him have the mind of a 3 year old. But no, it gave him Lews Therin's memories.

 

If there was one thing I would've changed if I were writing this series. I would've had some moment where the Pattern went completely off the rails. Like, some element of the prophecy failed to happen because of the Dark One's tampering. Like Elayne's babies would've died for instance. That would've hammered in that the Pattern isn't exactly set in stone and things can change.

 

It's hard to buy the "everyone has a choice. Everyone has a say" idea when the choices are death or assured victory.

 

It's an expanded version of what I call "The Avatar Principle" named after The Last Airbender series. Aang in that series has this ultra powerful super mode called the Avatar State that lets him call upon tremendous power but at a supposed extreme risk. If he gets killed during it he loses and will never be reincarnated. Now, the problem with making the stakes so be all and end all and binary like that are that we KNOW that nothing will harm the Avatar State unless it's dramatically convenient, and it's such a powerful mode that it never really struggles or gets endangered in any way outside of such a dramatically pivotal moment. So it feels like an instant win button.

 

The Pattern is an instant win button. It knows who will win, who will lose, when they will lose and where. It knows how to help soothe someone's mental state when they're on the verge of breaking, and it knows when someone is selfless enough to sacrifice themselves. It is NEVER wrong once throughout the entire series. Because events have absolutely no give in any way. If anyone fails at any time then the whole structure of the story falls apart. So you don't believe that ANYONE is in any danger of failing precisely because everyone is so essential to keeping the plot going. So why should I believe the Shadow might win this time when up against a power like that? "All prophecies are naught in the face of the Shadow" but where is that EVER shown? Even in the smallest of ways?

 

edit: Sorry, that was a rant and a half. But it's been brewing inside me for the entire time I was reading the series.

Edited by EmperorAllspice

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That's one of the problems Moridin/Ishamael had, and why he turned to the Shadow. It's also the same kind of thinking Rand had - that it was all pointless etc... 

 

Putting aside the "well, it's a book, we know they aren't going to win" argument you despise, I agree that there were not many moments when I thought the Shadow could win. 

 

One however, was when Rand balefired Graendal's palace and warped the pattern so hard it nearly snapped. That wasn't prophecy related, but showed the Pattern getting messed up. There's also the fact in aMoL, T'a'R starts disintegrating around Perrin, but that's late in the game, and doesn't really have a huge 'wow' factor. 

 

There were signs that prophecy etc.. was failing though. We see it with Min's viewings. Always before, she knew what was going to happen and all that jazz, but she starts getting viewings of possibilities. The best example is the one with Gawyn and Egwene and two paths, one leads to happiness and one leads to death. Then there is the one that Perrin has to be there for Rand 2 times or something bad will happen, and even if he is there, it might still happen. The viewing didn't say that Perrin would turn up (yeah, he did in the end, of course). 

 

However, I get what you're saying. There are few big examples of "wow, the Pattern is really gone haywire", most coming later in the series. 

 

For me, that is not too much of an issue. Personally, it is the fate of the individual characters or nations that concern me more than the theoretical possibility of the Shadow's chances of winning. For me, it was a question of how much is sacrificed, how much is lost, for the victory. But that's me. 

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That's one of the problems Moridin/Ishamael had, and why he turned to the Shadow. It's also the same kind of thinking Rand had - that it was all pointless etc... 

 

Putting aside the "well, it's a book, we know they aren't going to win" argument you despise, I agree that there were not many moments when I thought the Shadow could win. 

 

One however, was when Rand balefired Graendal's palace and warped the pattern so hard it nearly snapped. That wasn't prophecy related, but showed the Pattern getting messed up. There's also the fact in aMoL, T'a'R starts disintegrating around Perrin, but that's late in the game, and doesn't really have a huge 'wow' factor. 

 

There were signs that prophecy etc.. was failing though. We see it with Min's viewings. Always before, she knew what was going to happen and all that jazz, but she starts getting viewings of possibilities. The best example is the one with Gawyn and Egwene and two paths, one leads to happiness and one leads to death. Then there is the one that Perrin has to be there for Rand 2 times or something bad will happen, and even if he is there, it might still happen. The viewing didn't say that Perrin would turn up (yeah, he did in the end, of course). 

 

However, I get what you're saying. There are few big examples of "wow, the Pattern is really gone haywire", most coming later in the series. 

 

For me, that is not too much of an issue. Personally, it is the fate of the individual characters or nations that concern me more than the theoretical possibility of the Shadow's chances of winning. For me, it was a question of how much is sacrificed, how much is lost, for the victory. But that's me. 

That last bit is how I eventually ended up looking at it. But as a result it makes me see the shadow as the underdogs. It's not whether they can win, but how close they can come to winning.

 

The downside of that is that once the heroes start winning then you might as well put it down since you knew it was coming XD

 

Would in's prophecy about Siuan count as what you said?

Edited by EmperorAllspice

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And Rand's revelation about the nature of the Wheel would've held more weight for me if it didn't feel like the Pattern manipulated him there as well. Cadsuane was prophesied to make him laugh again and she brought in Tam. Rand's revelation came from words Tam spoke.

 

So Rand's changed viewpoint about how they really do have a choice comes from a situation where the pattern manipulated him into coming to that conclusion. Doesn't that just feel... mean? and like it's missing the point of Rand's realization entirely?

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Oh oh I get to be the first to ask. Ok here is a question though perhaps not a simple one. Why can Rand not channel after the bodyswap, I thought channeling followed the soul and Rand's soul can channel like nobody's business, how come he can no longer do so at the end of the book, and also how come he have none of the negative mental effects of those who have lost the ability to channel? He is just relieved not to have the ability any more and that is it. The only explanation I have for this is that he do not need the ability any longer as he have gotten the ability to affect the pattern directly, like what he do with his pipe, he no longer need to draw on the Power and weave or any of those trappings, he can just affect the pattern with his will and wishes without the go between, like a programmer who suddenly get the ability to control compute code directly with his mind so he no longer have any need of his computer.

 

The other possible explanation I guess is that it was a gift from the Creator, that he knew that all Rand wanted was to wander around and live a simple life and that he did not want to have the ability to channel, and so he took it away from him harmlessly, I guess the Creator being a God could do that.

 

 

I have always found this bit (power loss) quite easy to understand, so here's my interpretation.

 

The pattern demanded a dragon at a particular period in time. A dragon to oppose the dark one. The pattern spins one out when this is required (Lewis therein for example was not always the dragon, he became the dragon after the dark ones prison was breached). Now that the dark one is imprisoned again there is no need for a dragon. The problem is that if rand survives as rand then he will always be seen and hailed as the dragon and the pre eminent channeler/leader of the age. The pattern doesn't need this any more which is why rand was always destined to die ( in victory and in defeat). Rands and moridin have always been linked (third face that rand sometimes saw?) and the transfer of souls from a dying body into a dying mind occurred as rands power use bordered on the god like during the moment of sealing. To me the inability to channel but the ability to use it's power (see pipe lighting) is a necessary development for the rand character as in a world rebirthing all recognised channellers would have a role to play and somebody able to channel as strongly as rand would be unable to hide from the political machinations and would undoubtedly be drawn back in to some role. How he lost the ability (burned out etc) is not as important as why he lost it. For me he only lost the ability to be recognised - both as the dragon and as a channeler. That reason being vital to the pattern.

 

The other key story reason is Jordan's insistence throughout that the story wouldn't end cleanly and that he wanted the world to ove forward giving us something's that we weren't sure about and also that we could imagine maybe happening - in this case which of the girls follow him, will they be attracted to the new look him, will they leave their roles, can avi walk etc etc. similarly the seanchan story arc, moraine and thom etc etc.

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I dont think mat was that much better, he won the battle but it was close, and even mat acknowledges how good demanded is. Lets not forget that but for dem thinking he had to be LTT, he would have just travelled to the command centre and fried him. And who knows what would have happened if Lan hadn't of killed dem, most of the slaughter of the shadows forces near the end was down to them being leaderless, he was winning when he died, i doubt the stunt with the dragons in the cave would have been so effective with dem about.

Mat is the better general. Regardless of 'actual' experiences Matt is quite literally a walking talking military textbook. Demandred on the other hand has the experiences of his battles at the end of the age of legends (but only then as war was an alien concept prior to the dark ones prison being found and the actual war of power didn't last that long in comparison to matts memories). Matt has to wield disparate forces of different strengths with different agendas where as demandreds hammer is literally that.

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Mats job was simply to lead the fight Elayne was the over leader like Eisenhower, she was the one that had to deal with agenda's etc.  I don't think one can say Mat is better or Dem is better since in many aspects they are thee same.  Dem in the BWB is described as being a gambler, willing to play the odds.  Mat might of had a lot of memories they weren't all necessarily from the best military minds.  Some were of falling to ambushes, leading charges, being harried by Hawkwing.  So I wouldn't say all of Mat's military knowledge was useful.  I think both had strengths and weaknesses.  Where you had people like Sammel, who was a great military mind but he was better at defensive fights as he was described as only willing to commit forces when sure of victory.  Dem was best at attacking and taking risks like Mat.  As many have discovered textbook knowledge and real world knowledge aren't always the same.  I see them as a draw.

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About Rand no longer channeling; it seems to me that Rand became burned out with the last weave he did.  told that in another thread.

About Rand not having the mental effects of channeling loss; maybe his plans of traveling were enough for him to want to live.

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Through the series I sided with Moridin in that the DO's plan was to destroy Creation. RJ liked to play with equal and opposites so if the Creator created the world then basically left it alone then the DO meddled in the world and would ultimately destroy it.

 

I'm glad it turned it to be more complex than that, that he simply wanted to control Creation through whatever means suited him (from a world covering Blight to removing the human capacity for compassion).

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I recently started doing a full reread of the series (it will be my first time reading all the books straight through with the series complete). I just started The Great Hunt this week, and this might be a dumb question, but why did all the Aes Sedai come to Fal Dara at the start of the book? Obviously Siuan wanted to meet Rand, but only she and Moiraine (and later Verin after she figured it out) knew about Rand. Why did the other Aes Sedai come to Fal Dara, or why did those Aes Sedai think they were going to Fal Dara (an urgently, since mention is made of altering the currents to get there faster). Perhaps this is mentioned in the book, but i couldn't find anything about it.

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Some of that stuff seem to be told in the book's first meeting of Siuan & Moiraine.

Moiraine seemed to be one reason for the trip.

 

Some later book tells that the Amyrlin needs the Hall's approval before she goes elsewhere.

The mentioned meeting seemed to indicate that the Hall voted on this; and that the Hall's final decision was to send the other sisters with Siuan.

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Yeah there is no way the Amyrlin would be allowed to simply ride off alone, she is a ruler after all.  She doesn't have the freedom to simply come and go as she pleases.So ceremony dictatescertain amount accompany her etc..   Not to mention as mb said she had to get the halls approval also.

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How many non-Heroes know or suspect that the Heroes live in Telaranrhiod between spinnings?

Elayne & Nynaeve know through Birgitte; Fires of Heaven.

Birgitte seemed to tell Mat in Crown of Swords.

Egwene seemed to suspect since the time of Fires of Heaven.

Min seemed to suspect since the time of Winter's Heart.

 

Was Noal a Hero before last incarnation or did he become one in the last incarnation?

 

Becoming a Hero; is it doing some action/actions, meeting some qualification/qualifications, something else, or some combination of those?

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How many non-Heroes know or suspect that the Heroes live in Telaranrhiod between spinnings?

Elayne & Nynaeve know through Birgitte; Fires of Heaven.

Birgitte seemed to tell Mat in Crown of Swords.

Egwene seemed to suspect since the time of Fires of Heaven.

Min seemed to suspect since the time of Winter's Heart.

 

Was Noal a Hero before last incarnation or did he become one in the last incarnation?

 

Becoming a Hero; is it doing some action/actions, meeting some qualification/qualifications, something else, or some combination of those?

.

I would also say that both Thom and Juilin know too, since right after a blond woman appears out of nowhere laying unconscious next to a silver arrow, and also Nynaeve's emotional guilty breakdown, Elyane immediately explains to them, all of the girls activities that they have been involved in(including their Tel'aran'rhiod visits, though not mentioning her name) since leaving Tear together.

Then the very next day when Birgitte passes Valan Luca's archery challenge/audition, Thom and Juilin collect their winnings from betting on her winning it.

 

On becoming a hero, I am curious on that also.  But you would have to guess that both Perrin and Mat are absolute first ballet shoe ins for becoming Horn Heroes.

Edited by Cosmic Champion

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In Chapter 50 of The Fires of Heaven(To Teach, and Learn), Leane laments that two Aes Sedai had been sent to the Waste "chasing ducks." Unless I'm mistaken, Leane and every relevant person in the room at the time are well aware that Egwene is not actually Aes Sedai yet, only Accepted, so besides Moiraine, who was the other?

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In Chapter 50 of The Fires of Heaven(To Teach, and Learn), Leane laments that two Aes Sedai had been sent to the Waste "chasing ducks." Unless I'm mistaken, Leane and every relevant person in the room at the time are well aware that Egwene is not actually Aes Sedai yet, only Accepted, so besides Moiraine, who was the other?

 

The Rebel Tower sent two women (Bera and Kiruna I think? That's from memory) to the Aiel Waste to find Rand. They were "Chasing ducks" because he had already left the Waste before they were sent.

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The Rebel Tower sent two women (Bera and Kiruna I think? That's from memory) to the Aiel Waste to find Rand. They were "Chasing ducks" because he had already left the Waste before they were sent.

 

You're right, I totally forgot. And yes, Bera and Kiruna. They wanted to send Greens so the Warders could defend them from Aiel.

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from what I skimmed, 4 of (what the books call) the Great Captains reached Tarmon Gaidon.  the fates of 3 were told; 2 died, 1 survived.  what happened to the 4th?

 

 

were there any Blacks among those to bond Ashamen?

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After his awakening at Dragonmount, Rand was no longer just your regular channeler (beyond LTT 1.0).  As the DR he was able to affect the Pattern, trees, apples  (one with the land), spot DF's, drive them mad, protection against the taint...fending off at least a circle of 13...

 

Lighting the pipe, takes it one step forward, bending reality. 

 

I think Rand burned out, he was channeling more saidin than at the Cleansing (according to Logain's PoV) and Callandor has no buffer.

What I like to think is that the Pattern rewarded all three ta'veren in the end. None of the three were ta'veren anymore and Rand apparently no longer needed the ability since he could just will things to be so. Also, when Nynaeve discovered the ability to Heal Stilling / Gentling she described a missing place in their brains, leading me to believe the ability was at least somewhat physical. Moridin wasn't necessarily burned out either, so gaming his body might've brought along his ability?

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Really nothing to go on about the 4th great captain after Lan removed him.  Only BS probably knows, if he was allowed to fight he probably died.

 

Not sure if any blacks bonded an Asha'man or not.  If I remember right Alviria (spelling) ensured no blacks went on the ill fated attempt to attack the BT.  Once the BT was freed and Aes Sedai could go in to bond the men the Blacks had already been exposed.  So any blacks would of had to of either been in the 2nd group outside, 

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Was there ever mention or Rj ever talk about Thom's nephew?  Thought I read somewhere Elaida had a hand in it, also why was he gentled on the spot?  I assumed it had to do with Rand since if I am right he was about Rand's age.  Think moraine said "accidents" were happening to young men of a certain age.  So I assumed he was gentled by order of the BA in case he was the dragon.  Since we also know the head of the Red Ajah was a black.

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How would killing the DO take choice away from the world?

There can be no Light without the Dark and vice-verse.

No balance in only one force.

 

The only problem with that theory is the purely human evil that infested Paddan Fain. Apparently, evil is possible without the DO. So the DO is not really necessary.

is simple: that human evil wouldn't be possible if DO doesn´t exists. I think that the evil is chaos, so is normal that it turned against himself

Edited by Lothlan

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How would killing the DO take choice away from the world?

There can be no Light without the Dark and vice-verse.

No balance in only one force.

 

The only problem with that theory is the purely human evil that infested Paddan Fain. Apparently, evil is possible without the DO. So the DO is not really necessary.

is simple: that human evil wouldn't be possible if DO doesn´t exists (in fact, that evil was created for fight the shadow) i think that the evil is chaos, so is normal that it turned against himself

 

 

Yes, that's my take on it. Mordeth developed this 'power' or whatever you want to call it BECAUSE of the Dark One. It is a reaction to the evil of the DO. 

 

The DO is 'the Shadow in every man's mind'. While the two powers are opposite, it was the evil the DO plants (not consciously, but perhaps just by 'being') in the minds of humanity that led Mordeth down the road he took. 

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